Dark Moor - Ars Musica review
|Release date:||June 2013|
01. Ars Musica (Intro)
02. First Lance Of Spain
03. This Is My Way
04. The Road Again
05. Together As Ever
06. The City Of Peace
07. Gara And Jonay
08. Living In A Nightmare
09. El Ultimo Rey
10. St. James Way
11. Spanish Suite (Asturias)
12. The Road Again [acoustic version]
13. Living In A Nightmare [orchestral version]
Within the world of power metal, Dark Moor is a band that deserves to be higher up the food chain. Sure, they're well known and respected, but they should really be on the top tier of the genre. Throughout their almost 20 year history they have consistently released amazing albums. Not just solid or "good stuff," actual great power metal. Even with a change of vocalist 10 years ago, they didn't skip a beat, and seem to continue improving with time and releasing standards of power metal.
Or, at least many of their albums should be standards. Perhaps the band already gets the elite-level of respect they deserve and I just haven't noticed, but it seems to me that Dark Moor is overlooked more often than they should be. More importantly, after so many years of great releases, it's getting harder and harder to pick favorites from their discography.
Which brings us to Ars Musica. Where has the path lead this time? Musically, this is not consistently as symphonic as some of their recent discography, and it's nice to hear their slightly more simplified form. As far as the structure, this album has a sweeping arc instead of just a bunch of amazing songs. They're not all hits; some serve their purpose of supporting the album and being what the music needs at the moment, tying the album together with an extra level of cohesion.
This can be good or bad, depending on what you prefer. Dark Moor certainly has several albums that are one great tune after another, bam bam bam, and those are spectacular. However, it's nice to see them put together something from a different angle, even if it lacks the hit value of, say, Autumnal.
Even so, by the 2nd listen you'll already be recognizing, or even singing along with, most of the songs. It's the kind of album that has no lead time on enjoyability; get into it on the first spin. Time will tell if we go back to it as much as the others but I have a feeling that some of the songs I have deemed "support" tracks, reveal their hidden secrets to the dedicated listener.
Whether you prefer linear albums or just great tunes, Dark Moor has added yet another gem to their crown as royalty of power metal.
Written on 29.06.2013 by
Susan appreciates quality metal regardless of sub-genre. Metal Storm Staff since 2006.
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